Thursday, 12 June 2008

Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Best Sandwich?

Wholemeal bread
Scraping of butter
Marrow Chutney

Anything better than that?

Prepare for Prairies

Mule, Chris Wiggs, has been traversing the United States in sections. Here is a brief account of his solo ride through the Prairie States; Wyoming, South Dakota and Minnesota.

I did this trip on my own when the tour collapsed five days before departure after everyone else, including the tour guide and van driver, pulled out. A few days of feverish Google mapmaking and it was time to go. Didn't get properly lost, though. The compass was the essential tool.

At 1250 recorded miles this was almost the same length as last year's Santa Cruz to Albuquerque section although that one was van supported. The southerly winds in New Mexico were blowing us across tthe road so we moved this middle section of the trip north. You can see the route by pasting "Jackson,Wy to Minneapolis, Mn" into Google Maps. That's the highway route, mine was mostly backroads, although I did get caught out on County Roads and Avenues.
Then you have to go back to the last town and get on the Interstate for a few days until quieter roads appear again.

Of the fourteen days riding I had about nine days of cold, rainy weather with a persistent easterly or north easterly headwind. The headwind makes the day about half as long again for the same effort. The rest of the days were dry with warm sun, blue skies, a tailwind and bare arms and legs. Perfect for the longer rides.
The roads were a lot quieter than last year but that may be because these routes are less used, or that it was cold and rainy, or maybe because the Weather Channel forecast Tornadic Lightning Storm Hurricanism Danger every day instead of the drizzle that actually happened.
There was the same proportion of enormobilebuses towing full size SUVs but weirdly, once into Minnesota, all the jacked up 4x4's disappeared and there were just whisper quiet cars running smoothly on tarmac and gravel roads too, without turning over or exploding, apparently.

The standard of driving courtesy shown to me as a cyclist was very high in all the states I passed through, although the sight of an actual bicycle on the highway leading into and through outer Minneapolis had some folk hanging onto their horns from 500 yds back. Some sort of warning system I think.

Monday, 9 June 2008

Naomi House Charity Walk

With the sun shining, 630 sponsored walkers made their way along the Clarendon Way from Winchester to Salisbury raising money with each footstep for Naomi House, a children's hospice covering Berkshire, Dorset, Hampshire, the Isle of Wight, Wiltshire and the fringes of West Sussex and Surrey.
The perfect conditions for the 26 mile walk made the need for water and good quality energy to be consumed. Mulebar had a stall at mile 13 providing bars for about 400 people.
Following an easy car journey back to Salisbury Mulebar met all the finishers in the Close and again provided more bars..... Mango Tango seemed to be flying off the shelves.
Well done to everyone who finished the walk - by the look of people coming in it looked tiring. Hope the man in jeans I saw at the 1/2 way point made it; you looked very hot!!